‘Tis the Season

It’s beginning to feel A LOT like Christmas here in New York City. The windows of Macy’s, Saks, Bergdorf’s and other grande dame department stores are done to dazzling perfection and our humble abode is likewise decked out. Christmas tree trimmed – check. Stockings hung by the fire – check. Gift shopping finished — er, still working on that one.

Whether you’re looking for a feel good gift for family and friends or a fun, bubble bath read to kick off holiday self-care, I hope you’ll check out my following two books:

Magazine managing editor and unapologetic Scrooge, Starr Starling is just as happy to sleep through the holiday. On Christmas Eve Starr is visited by the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future—all in the form of Matt Landry, the hot new art director she’s secretly crushing on.

“Award-winning author Hope Tarr’s A Cinderella Christmas Carol presents a different kind of Dickens story — one with a hunky Ghost of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Be.” – Joyce Lamb, USA Today

Twenty-eight bestselling romance and women’s fiction authors, including Deanna Raybourn, May McGoldrick, Lisa Renee Jones and Yours Truly, share their real-life love stories in this wholesome, heart-warming anthology perfect for the winter holidays. Net sales benefit the formerly homeless moms and kids of Women in Need, Inc.

Patricia M. 5.0 out of 5 stars Loved this book! Some of the stories are funny, some are romantic, some are cute, some will break your heart but all are wonderfully true stories of love. I read anywhere from one to four stories a night. Enjoy, while you help a charity.

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Wishing you a holiday season brimming with fairy tale dreams come TRUE.
Hope

Featured in USA TODAY

Hope Picks 170
With Daisy; photo by BizUrban.com.

Animals aren’t just companions to me — they’re inspiration. Since launching my writing career, I’ve made it my tradition to include one of my real-life feline rescues as fictional “characters” in my books. Check out my feature in today’s USA TODAY HEA blog, duly shared with my rescue tabby cat, Daisy (“Forget belly rubs, Hope Tarr’s kitties get book cameos,” Sunday, October 11, 2015).  To read more about Daisy and my other feline muses, check out my Best Friends page here!

Join me at Lady Jane’s Salon®

Hope signing Twelve Nights & Vanquished at Lady Jane's Salon. I’m so, so, so excited!!!

This Tuesday, July 21st 7-9:30pm at Madame X, we at Lady Jane’s Salon® will welcome the 35th annual Romance Writers of America® national conference back to New York City. I say “back” because we’ve helped kick off the conference before, in 2011. Then we drew more than 125 attendees, including surprise guest, Eloisa James, and Emmy Award winning documentary filmmaker, Laurie Kahn. Laurie and her crew from Blueberry Hill Productions filmed the Salon for her “Love Between the Covers” feature-length documentary film on the romance community. Check out the (less than four minute) footage from that crazy-fun night here.

Floor_Red_2But there’s more…

Along with co-hosting the event, I’ll be reading a never before released sneak peek from  Irish Eyes, my very first foray into Women’s Historical Fiction. Set in Gilded Age through Jazz Age New York City, the manuscript has been a true Labor of Love. I can’t wait to share the first chapter with everyone!

Or to help roll out our stellar lineup of guests: Sonali Dev, Dahlia Adler, Carrie Lomax, Laura K. Curtis, Nancy Scanlon, and Regina Kyle. The service staff at our ever fab venue, Madame X, stands at the ready to serve with $5-$6 drink specials (including super yummy “mocktails”). We also have terrific raffle prizes donated by some of the romance industry’s brightest established and rising stars.

Best of all, your $5 admission supports our annual donation to our house charity, Win, helping real-life NYC families find their own Happily Ever After. It doesn’t get any better than that. If you’re in town for #RWA15 or simply in town, please plan to be our guest!

 

 

Last Day to Get TEMPTING for FREE! Plus, Never Before Released Excerpt!

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Today (2/9) is your LAST DAY to get my Victorian set historical, TEMPTING for FREE, and I don’t want any of you, my dear readers, to miss out, especially when it’s all so perfectly simple and refreshingly easy. Download the awesome–and also #FREE–EverAfter Romance ebook app: http://bit.ly/12jLGry (iOS) & http://bit.ly/1wNJT9t (Android). In less than a minute, the book will appear on your shelf.

Already have the app? Even better, just enter Code: htfree

Still need help deciding? Enjoy this never before released snippet from TEMPTING.

 

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Reading TEMPTING at Lady Jane’s Salon® on 2-2-15.

TEMPTING, © Hope Tarr, That Book, Inc.

Simon paced from one end of the fringed foyer runner to the other, white-gloved hands folded behind him. Piles of paperwork awaited him on his desk and yet with time on his hands still he hadn’t managed to make heads or tails of any of it. A soft sound stalled his steps. Expecting Mrs. Griffith or one of the housemaids, he looked to the staircase. And saw Christine.

          Garbed in a gown of saffron silk, her hair swept up into an intricate confection of ringlets, her bared shoulders held back to reveal every proud inch of her lithe frame, she graced him with a soft smile. “Simon.”

          Descending, she seemed more fantasy than flesh-and-blood, an exquisite angel floating toward him despite the hint of a hitch to her step. The hall was chilly but, inside him, heat spiked. Like a sleepwalker, he felt himself moving toward her, every glib greeting and clichéd compliment fleeing his brain. Only one word remained.    

          “Christine.”

          She stepped off the landing, and he reached up to take her hand in his. “I’m not late, am I?”

          That made him smile. Despite her finery, she was so unspoiled, so… dear. “To be truly fashionable, you should have kept me waiting for at least a half hour.” Realizing he still held onto her hand, he released it with regret.

          Her smile dimmed. “Oh dear, I’ve gone about it all wrong again, haven’t I?”

          Her words touched off the tenderness in his heart. “No, I’m glad you’re here.” He took the cape from her and hung it upon the hall tree. Turning back, he said, “I have a present for you.”

          He led her over to the pier glass. Stepping behind her, he caught his first glimpse of her gown’s low back. All that beautiful bareness had him searching for his next breath.

          Finding it, he said, “Close your eyes.”

          She obeyed, and he reached into the inner pocket of his cutaway jacket and withdrew the black velvet box. “No peeking,” he chided, seeing her eyelid flicker. He snapped open the box. Withdrawing the necklace, he brought the gold chain about her throat.

          “It’s cold.” She reached up, her fingertips brushing the pendant dangling just above the swell of her breasts.

          “It was a long and rather bracing ride back from town,” he admitted.

          “Your business was to buy me a gift?” Eyes still closed, she leaned back ever so slightly against him.

          “It was.” He fumbled but finally fastened the clasp. He lingered a moment more, inhaling her sweet, clean scent, then stepped back. “Open your eyes.”

          She did, and their gazes met in the mirror. She looked down at the necklace and uttered an exclamation of delight. “Oh, Simon, it’s fair near the same color as my gown. How did you know?”

          “My spies are everywhere.” He winked, feeling light and young and altogether freer than he had in years, quite possibly ever. That the pendant complemented her gown was pure happenstance. He’d bought the amber because the color made him think of her eyes, eyes capable of capturing men’s hearts with a single, liquid look. “Do you like it?”

          She whisked about to face him. “It’s the loveliest gift I’ve ever gotten.”

          You’re the loveliest thing I’ve ever seen, he thought but didn’t dare say.

          “I’m glad,” he said, both happy and humbled that his token had made her so happy.

          She took a step back. “Do I look—” She faltered, brow furrowed, likely searching for one of the long, elegant words she shored up for such occasions. “Do I look…ravished?”

          Accustomed as he’d become to the artful simpering of society beauties, Christine’s guilelessness was akin to being handed a glass of iced lemonade after hours of sun baked toil. Refreshing, delicious, sweet—and yet tartly tempting.

          Pressing a hand to the small of her back, he felt her shiver against his fingertips. “Not yet…but then the evening is young.”

                 ~~~ ~~~  

 

 

OPERATION CINDERELLA featured in THE NEW YORK POST!

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Sometimes Christmas–or in this case, Valentine’s–comes early! Check out the article featuring me in today’s New York Post and find out how data science, a divorce–and a seriously awesome 1860’s “fainting couch”–led me to NYC where I wrote OPERATION CINDERELLA and found my very own Happily Ever After!

(Author photo by Anne Wermiel for the NY POST).

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Reading OPERATION CINDERELLA at Lady Jane’s Salon®

On January 5th, I had the pleasure (and honor!) of reading from OPERATION CINDERELLA at Lady Jane’s Salon®, the NYC-based romance reading series (the city’s first and still only!), which I co-founded…((gulp!))…six years ago. As always, the crimson clad venue, Madame X, was superb, our audience of dedicated romance readers, writers, and publishing professionals generous and supportive. Below is the short video. Please feel free to share it online with other readers. And if you haven’t yet, please download your FREE copy of Operation Cinderella from the e-tailer of your choice–Kindle, Nook, Kobo, iTunes, Google Play etc. We’ve had MORE THAN 250,000 downloads since the promo began in mid-December, with many of you going on to download the other Suddenly Cinderella series books as well. But, like all things, the giveaway won’t go on forever. The freebie ends 12 midnight, January 12th. Blessings & Happy 2015! Hope

Hope Tarr Reading Operation Cinderella from raj moorjani on Vimeo.

Tea for Two

Suzan + HopeI recently rounded out my Big Birthday Month+ with afternoon tea at Lady Mendl’s courtesy of my lovely author friend, Suzan Colón (Beach Glass). Located within The Inn at Irving Place in the tony, London-like NYC enclave of Gramercy Park, Lady Mendl’s consistently ranks as the city’s most romantic tea salon–with good reason. Sit back and savor a quick, calorie-free tour of our nearly three hours’ time travel back to a kinder, gentler, infinitely more gracious time.

LM_CenterpieceOn arrival, we were greeted by our winsome, 20-something server-to-be. Wearing a chic black wrap dress, rope of pearls, and a soft, scarlet-painted smile, she directed us to the beautifully-appointed parlor where our coats were whisked away and we were seated before the crackling fire. Ah, I could get used to this.

After a brief respite for thawing, we were led into the adjacent dining room. A quick scan of the opulently appointed yet cozy chamber confirmed that high tea had been a VERY good idea indeed. And that Lady M’s is a venue where even the teensiest detail is accounted for, down to the exquisite, pearl-festooned miniature centerpieces gracing each cloth-covered table.

LM_Squash SoupOur respective teas selected, the five-course repast began. Course #1 was a warming butternut squash soup–or was it pumpkin? Regardless, it was delicious, the perfect starter for shaking off the gray chill of the day.

Next, we were each brought a plate of the ubiquitous tea sandwiches only these weren’t ubiquitous at all but creative and delicious, not to mention farm-to-table fresh. My favorite? The smoked salmon with crème fraiche and Wasabi caviar.

LM_Finger SandwichesWith the savories out of the way, it was time to transition to the sweets. Course #3 was a hearty scone dressed with Devonshire Clotted Cream (!!!) and preserves.

Slices of Lady Mendl’s signature (mouth melting) cake followed as our fourth, mine sporting a single birthday candle.

We finished with plates of assorted miniature cookies and chocolate-covered strawberries and, of course, a final cup of tea. So. Civilized.

LM_Cake (last crs)Throughout, industry news was weighed and waxed upon and worlds saved–well, at least our fictional ones. 😉

If you live in, or plan to visit, NYC, seriously consider taking tea at The Inn at Irving Place. And don’t be surprised if a detailed scene of “high tea” doesn’t find its way into a next Hope Tarr novel. Maybe even the historical women’s fiction saga set in NYC I’m researching now.

 

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TGIF — Thank Goodness It’s Fall!

Hope climbing Mt. Beacon_9-21-14

Fall is my favorite time of year–and not only because it’s the host season for my Libran birthday! Crisp air, glorious foliage, and a return to wearing luxe sweaters and cool boots! Even more so than the spring, come September/October, I feel this incredible burst of energy, as though I’m not not only renewed but re-born.

Check out my fall newsletter where I share the latest intel on film deals, foreign releases, and general fun “stuffs.” Not on my mailing list but would like to be? Please visit my Contact page and subscribe.

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We made it! The summit of Mt. Beacon (1,635 ft), Beacon NY, 9-21-14

Wishing you an autumn brimming with fairytale dreams come true!

Hope

Announcing Scribbling Women & the Real-Life Romance Heroes Who Love Them

Scribbling Women_FC_300Last summer I got the idea to celebrate this Valentine’s 2014 with a nonfiction anthology of romance authors, a sort of “Chocolate for a Woman’s Soul” for the post-Millennium to benefit one of my favorite charities: Win. I floated the idea by some of my favorite fellow authors and, voila, what began as a seed of an idea blossomed into an actual book.

In Scribbling Women and the Real-Life Romance Heroes Who Love Them, twenty-eight romance fiction writers, one for each day of February 2014, reveal their real-life stories of how they met, wed and love—and are loved and supported by—their spouses and life partners. At times whimsical and laugh-out-loud funny, at others poignant and bittersweet, all unfailingly inspiring, each essay celebrates that most powerful and sacred of human bonds: love.

If readers take away just one message from our anthology, I hope it will be this: Happily Ever After isn’t only the stuff of romance novels and fairy tales.

It is every woman’s birthright.

ALL net proceeds from sales of the anthology support Win. Founded on February 14, 1983—yes, Valentine’s Day—Win works to transform the lives of NYC’s homeless women and their children.

Contributors include May McGoldrick. Katharine Ashe, Deanna Raybourn, Jacquie D’Alessandro, Leanna Renee Hieber and Lisa Renée Jones.  For a full list of contributors, visit our website.

Buy the book digitally from Amazon, Barnes & Noble or Smashwords for just $2.99. Or order a commemorative print edition for under $10.

The official Scribbling Women & the Real-Life Romance Heroes Who Love Them book launch will take place at the fifth anniversary celebration of Lady Jane’s Salon, Monday, February 3, 2014 7-9 PM at Madame X.

Huzzah & Happy Valentine’s Month,

Hope